For the past 33 years

For the past 33 years

Mount Baker teacher recognized for teaching excellence

A teacher at Mount Baker Secondary School has been awarded a national award for his years of innovation and excellence in teaching.

A teacher at Mount Baker Secondary School has been recognized with a national award for his years of innovation and excellence in teaching.

Last week, Paul Knipe received the news that he had been awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence.

“It’s just nice to be recognized and it’s very humbling and just makes me want to continue to do what I do,” Knipe said. “I wanted to be a teacher since I was 12 years old. To me it’s not a job — it’s a lifestyle.”

He received a letter from the Prime Minister himself last week.

This is Knipe’s 33rd year of teaching. He has taught drafting and design, woodwork and metalwork and worked with students with developmental disabilities.

“I’ve also been big on — whatever I’m teaching — of linking the school to the community and getting kids to understand the importance of getting involved in your community and giving back to the community, looking out for people that are in need in the community,” he said.

Knipe said that he was taught those traits from his own upbringing.

“The community is a big part of what education is all about. It’s linking those two together,” he said.

Knipe was nominated back in April by fellow teachers Grant Duchscherer and Darryl Taylor. The two worked on the nomination process for over a year, gathering letters of reference and anecdotes from the faculty and students.

“They made an announcement to our staff and myself that they had nominated me and I was humbled and appreciative,” Knipe said. “Then last week I got a letter from the prime minister saying congratulations, you’re one of the recipients of this award. They gave out 35 awards each year across Canada.”

Duchscherer said the award is quite an honour.

“It’s like the Nobel prize for teaching and innovation,” he said.

Evan Bueckert and Rod Osiowy were bestowed with the honours in past years.

“That makes Cranbrook, or at least Mount Baker, the only high school that’s won three of them. We’re pretty thrilled with that,” Duchscherer said.

Duchscherer was in his masters program taking a course on community leadership, with a bend towards educational leaders, from Dr. Carol Freehan when he got the idea to nominate Knipe.

As the course progressed, he began to think that the characteristic that were talked about in the course sounded exactly like someone he knew.

“I began to think of all the incredible things over the years that he’s done,” Duchscherer said. “And that was just the tip of the ice berg. Once I dug up some of the dirt over the years, I showed it to Even Bueckert. He looked at it and said this guy is a shoe-in for this award, and the Prime Minister agreed with us.”

He said they are all very happy with the results.

“He’s a very humble quiet guy,” he said. “Things just get done in the school. He volunteers for everything quietly. He won the award for his work with the adapted technology. What he has created is not only a model in Cranbrook and B.C. but now nationally. It’s a model around the country for what he does with student with disabilities and technology education.”

Knipe thanked his wife Cheryl and his two children Taylor and James, as well as the two people who nominated him, Duchscherer and Taylor for the nomination, and everyone else who supported him.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)
30 new COVID-19 cases, five more deaths in Interior Health

This brings the total number of cases to 7,271 since testing began

Cranbrook city hall. Photo by Trevor Crawley.
City approves funding for Mount Royal infrastructure remediation

City council voted to spend up to $1.75 million this year to… Continue reading

Castlegar’s Gabrielle Herle (right) will be one of the speakers at the conference. She is seen here with Wendy Gaskill from Chinook Scaffolding accepting their Contractor of the Year Award in 2019 from the Builders Code Champion Awards. Photo: Submitted
Girls in STEAM and Leadership Conference offered free for all girls in the Kootenay Boundary

Virtual conference for girls in grades 8 to 12 will be taking place on March 8

At the Cranbrook Public Library
What’s happening at the Cranbrook Public Library

Mike Selby The Library is now open with extended hours (with some… Continue reading

Cranbrook City Hall. Townsman file photo.
City trumpets record year for economic development

The city is touting 2020 as a banner year for economic development… Continue reading

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

Interior Health officially declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Creekside Landing in Vernon on Jan. 3, which was followed by the first death from the virus 10 days later. (Kaigo photo)
COVID outbreak over at Vernon care home

Creekside Landing cleared of coronavirus, despite additional death in last day

VIDEO: Lynx grabs lunch in Kamloops

A lynx surprises a group of ducks and picks one off for lunch

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Most Read